To put it into simpler words E-commerce is the buying and selling of goods and services through the internet. We will be covering how do e-commerce sites make money in 2021 in detail.

Due to the current situations and of course globalization, everything from groceries to clothes, to masks is available online.

When we have to buy something the first thing we do is go online and search for it and compare it from different sites and applications. Gone are the days of roaming in markets for hours in search of an item. And these days due to the present pandemic it is not even safe to step out of your homes.

Setting up your e-commerce and digital platforms can be easy as compared to setting up an actual store. It could be more cost-friendly as well.

How do E Commerce Sites make money

But driving traffic to your platform and reaching the target audience could be strenuous.

It takes time, effort, and well a lot of promotion.

There are many ways an e-commerce site or platform might make money.

First would be very obvious — by selling their products to the customers.

Selling the products at the right value point is very important.

Most of us aren’t impressed by the high costs and want to get the most out of it without spending much.

E-commerce can be conducted by using an e-commerce store or any other e-commerce platform for online marketing and sales activities. Reaching the target audience should be the priority of your business. Making sure your advertisements and promotions are viewed by the right people is important.

What are the ways for an E-commerce site to make money?

Let’s talk about some of the ways e-Commerce sites make money.

How do Websites Make Money?

PPC Marketing Services

Pay-Per-Click Marketing Services

PPC or Pay-per-click means paying for each time a user clicks or views your platform.

It helps in reducing the additional promotion costs. It is the amount organization pays to draw traffic to their websites or any other platform.

You can track the number of visitors to your platform. You can make a detailed analysis based on the user’s data — age, gender, demographics, etc. This can help in identifying the consumer base and the target audience.

People log on to websites or sign up for newsletters that give an organization their email IDs and other forms of contacting them. E-mail Marketing is a way of contacting your customers and target audience. You can do giveaways and provide them with different sales codes and coupons to attract them and eventually leading to sales.

Fixed Price Contract

Fixed Price Contract

An E-commerce company gets a fixed amount from the registered sellers to host their products on the e-commerce platform.

Every e-commerce platform has products and services from different brands that are promoted and sold on different websites or applications.

We could take the example of Amazon. It has thousands of products listed on its website. If we search for Johnson’s Baby Lotion, we would find it there. If we search for any mobile brand, it would be there. Most of the e-commerce sites earn money by following the Fixed Price model along with charging a certain percentage of sales as commission.


commission agent

How do websites earn commission?

Depending on different products and services, the e-commerce company charges the registered sellers a certain percentage of commission on the value of the products sold and services provided.

This commission could range between 5%- 20%. Most of the e-commerce companies have products and services from different brands and so they receive commission by selling their products on their platforms.

There are various types of e-commerce businesses like B2B, B2C, C2B, C2C, etc. Sometimes Businesses sell to businesses, businesses sell to customers, customers sell to customers themselves, and so on.

The internet offers a lot of opportunities for everyone. Anyone can set up their online business with the click of a button.

Marketing your platforms appropriately will help you create consumer awareness. Creating a buzz and being different is considered the key to attracting customers.

Broadly speaking apart from PPC, Fixed Price, and Commission Models there are multiple other avenues for e-commerce sites to make money.

We are going to cover some of those in great detail here.

Social Media Marketing

Different Social Media Channels

To start with, let’s begin with Social Media Marketing.

In today’s time, the only kind of Marketing that matters is Social Media Marketing. Upping the social media game is very important because every one of us practically lives with our phones.

People feel the need to post something every minute.

Everything needs to be “for the gram”. Social media marketing is not just creating a website or setting up an account on Instagram. It is a lot more than that.

Every picture we click, we find ourselves wondering whether it is worth posting or not.

If we take the example of Instagram, one can just tap and find out where a certain product is from.

Paid partnerships and sponsored products are a major thing at the moment.

Hiring content creators and influencers to promote your product or service is the easiest form of marketing. People look up to them for advice and product reviews.

Starting up different campaigns and challenges and involving people that have an impact is also a way to get the attention of your target audience. Making separate hashtags could also be a step for promotion.

Constantly engaging and posting on your social media accounts, following up with your target audience or customers, in general, is also important.

We may take examples of different products and services offered like there’s a brand called Soneva which owns luxury resorts in Maldives and Thailand.

They offer influencers and other content creators a stay in their resorts. They promote their brand on their social media accounts. They also use the hashtag #discoversoneva.

luxury resorts in Thailand

There are many products and services which can be promoted by posting at the right time as peoples’ need changes with time, seasons, availability and festivals, etc.

The growing use of social media has let businesses indulge and start more social media campaigns which might help them to grow.

Social media helps businesses in building inter-personal relationships with their target audience and connect on a better level with them.

Businesses should be active in handling their social media accounts and keeping up with the trends. The benefits of using social media for businesses far outweigh the challenges.

Here’s an example. Nowadays, if a cosmetic brand comes up with their new collection they make sure to send their products to beauty influencers so that they in return could promote their products on their accounts.

The same happens with any other product or category of products. Brands also collaborate with different people with an online presence to promote their products and services.

With the present pandemic, crisis brands are left with no other choice than marketing their products digitally.

Digital Marketing is important for start-ups as these businesses are nascent and generally have a low budget. This type of marketing has a low cost as compared to traditional marketing because it is advertising on the internet and doesn’t require much other than access to the internet and some digital skills.

By Connecting People

Making money is the need of every business there are various ways a business could make money.

In this, the customers serve other customers.

Examples of this could be eBay, Olx, etc.

In these platforms, the consumers that are willing to sell their personal belongings for whatsoever reason to another customer, who requires that product, come in contact and make transactions.

These digital platforms are really helpful for the people who are low on budget and require something of their use.

These types of digital platforms are also called a marketplace. Its main motive is to connect consumers without having to deal with middlemen.

They take commissions to connect both the parties.

eBay is the largest auction site on the web. It makes money by charging a commission on each sale also called a transaction fee, which is paid by the seller.

Airbnb is a service provider that helps people to stay at home like places while traveling. They do not own any of these properties but merely acts as a service provider.

This platform shows customer homes or villas that are available for a few days or weeks. It helps people while traveling when they’re on the road and need a place to stay and where no hotels are available. These Airbnbs provide a homelike feel and may have more than one room available under one roof and give the privacy that a hotel might not provide.

Providing Related Services

Online Booking Services

Some digital platforms provide related services and club such services on one platform which is easier for both the provider and the receiver.

Bookmyshow has all the tickets and passes for movies, events, concerts, and any other entertainment shows happening around you.

You can book tickets for a recent movie that has been released or an “Open Mic” happening with your favorite standup comedian or a show where your favorite singer is performing.

It has tickets and passes to a majority of events, you can just log in and pay for your tickets, and voila! It’s done.

Just like any other digital platform, it makes money from transactions happening between the service provider and the receiver.

Now talking about Makemytrip.

Makemytrip is an organization that provides online travel services like flight tickets, bus and railway tickets, hotel bookings, and so on.

While planning a trip you can always look up to these sites and applications for everything from cab services to booking your hotels and villas and so on.

make my trip

They provide detailed information on each and everything with the ratings and reviews of other customers.

You can see how your hotel looks like, what places are near your hotel, flight timings and other traveling arrangements available for specific dates, their price, and the list goes on and on.

There are other sites as well like Goibibo, Oyo, Zo Rooms, etc. Here is a comparison of AirBnB vs Oyo Rooms. The data speaks of their exponential growth.

OYO v AirBnB

Locating Services

zomato swiggy uber

Swiggy, Zomato, Uber Eats are some great examples that show How do E-Commerce Sites Make Money in 2021.

E-commerce sites and applications help us locate different services like finding a restaurant for dining or places delivering food to our homes.

These platforms help us identify different places to eat for different celebrations.

You can name the occasion whether it is a birthday or an anniversary or a romantic date or dinner with family and friends and it provides you with accurate pictures of restaurants and cafes, its menus and ratings, and reviews.

If you cannot go out, and nowadays you shouldn’t because it is not safe, you can always order food at home and savor your cravings for your favorite dishes.

These platforms earn money by acting as a mediator between the service provider and the receiver.

They offer various codes and coupons to attract customers. These platforms are famous and have a customer base everywhere.

Food delivery applications are in the limelight because we as a generation are lazy and want everything to be prepared for us, and well who doesn’t like food delivered at their doorstep.

The restaurants connect with the e-commerce businesses and they in return display them on their applications or websites or other platforms in exchange for money.

They provide images of the food and the dining area and how the food is cooked and people’s reviews. It began with online ordering, then phone ordering took place and it all became much easier.

This is one of the topics on How do E-Commerce Sites Make Money in 2021.

Providing Employment Opportunities

employment opportunities

Another important topic on How do E-Commerce Sites Make Money in 2021 is websites that provide employment opportunities.

There are many digital platforms available that provide employment opportunities.

Well, every organization does that because they need people to work and achieve their goals, but some of these platforms are specially created for generating employment and to provide resources to organizations.

Some websites or platforms provide internships, some provide jobs.

These sites connect the candidates with the organization, and then the process of employment begins.

It helps both the companies and the job seekers by providing them a common platform to interact and move further with the hiring process.

Examples of such platforms are,, and LinkedIn, etc.

It can help provide people employment, experience and might also help people in living a better life with better jobs and a better lifestyle.

They also earn money by acting as mediators and providing a platform for employment.

Every website or platform provides something to its consumers in return for money.

Every good or service has its value for money.

In today’s world, people are very creative, have a lot to offer. People are attracted to new ideas and are ready to invest in businesses or buy products.

With the current situation prevailing, there are huge opportunities for work from home jobs.

In a time of crisis like this, generating employment and providing livelihood to the people may help the organizations as well as our economy as a whole.

After all, people need to be paid for the hard work they do whether it’s from the office or working from home.

People who specialize in different things like baking, writing, or any other activity can get jobs and work through these platforms.

In times like these, job portals and platforms like these are stepping up to the cause and helping people in getting employment. They provide services for free or at lower costs.

Given the magnitude of job loss, some business leaders and industry veterans have taken it upon themselves to help laid-off employees in their respective sectors.

Growing and helping is what this year has taught us as a nation.

Online Education Services

Online teaching

Providing Education is also a service that deserves to be paid equally as any other job.

Working in these tough times is difficult. Providing education to the future of our country is important for its development.

Schools are shut.

Some online platforms make online classes easy and widely accessible. These platforms help students in gaining knowledge and wisdom.

Some of the platforms are Udemy, Byjus, etc. They provide classes and study material for students of every grade, starting right from the basic to the higher classes.

These platforms connect teachers and students through the internet and help in providing and gaining education and knowledge.

It can be helpful as it provides instructors and teachers who teach at the pace you prefer and at the time you like and at the comfort of your home.

Having an internet connection available could be a blessing for people who like to gain knowledge and like to learn.

It helps in greater participation for both the teachers and students and makes the learning process enjoyable and engaging.

Providing education digitally through applications provides a means for teachers and faculties to earn money, and let e-commerce websites earn by charging a certain percentage as commissions.

Other than providing classes, lectures, and study materials, these platforms make money by providing products, career counseling, and coaching to students and teachers.

It lets students and teachers across the globe benefit from the application by joining and subscribing to these services.

By now it might be clear on How do E-commerce Sites Make Money in 2021.

A Conclusion on How do E-commerce Sites Make Money in 2021?

how do e-commerce sites make money

Refer to Wikipedia for International Statistics on Online Shopping. It might give you a glimpse on How do E-commerce Sites Make Money?

We have extensively covered some of the ways for e-commerce sites to make money in 2021.

The list could be endless. Internet technology is opening new horizons every day for e-Commerce marketers.

To generate more money and sales e-commerce sites do aggressive promotion and marketing. They use their social media handles, emails, and websites for creating customer awareness and building a relationship with their target audience.

Once you get loyal customers, you get a customer base and you get to know your target audience and much more. You have data about who is interested in your products and services.

You need to expand your customer base by interacting and making interpersonal relationships with people. You need to know their preferences and make changes and expand your line of products and services according to their preferences.

You need to build and maintain your brand value and grow with the times.

As discussed above, there are various ways of earning money through e-commerce platforms. We could use pay-per-click or social media and many other ways to promote our products and services and make money.

Adding value is important.

Driving traffic to your platform and converting them is the best way of making sales and generate revenue.

Fixed price and receiving commissions is another way of making money.

E-commerce sites charge fees for promoting and selling products of different brands and providing services on their platform.

Online retailers and service providers like AliExpress, Amazon, eBay, and many others harness the potential of big data and data analytics to their advantage.

They rule the market because of their spending on research and analysis. They apply cutting-edge technology to increase traction, engagement, and in return earn more revenue.

E-commerce is the future. It is fast expanding and is getting acceptable widely the world over.

This article clearly and in detail explains How Do E-commerce Sites Make Money in 2021. Thank you so much for reading this article.

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